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Do You Need New Camping Gear? Gear, gadgets and gizmos for camping

BIG BAD JOHN R. 2012/05/23 14:14:12
Yes, I could use some new camping gear.
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Here are a few pieces of gear to consider this year. They're all handy without breaking the bank (too bad) and they give you more things to play with on your next campout. Think of them like stocking stuffers, but you don't have to wait until Christmas to buy them.

DRINK AND PLATE

File this under "why didn't someone think of this sooner."

It's such as simple concept. One hand for your drink, one for your plate, and you're out of hands for your silverware and paper towel. With this, you carry your plate and drink in one hand. What you use the other for is entirely up to you. The drink and plate nests for easy stowing in your kitchen box.

Price: Family pack of eight, $24. Buy at: www.drinkandplate.com.

REFLECTIVE ROPE

No more tripping over tent lines in the middle of the night. (OK, you still might, but at least you will see them.) This rope has reflective material weaved into it so it shines when light hits it. Replace your existing guy lines with this line, or use it to string tarps and rainflies and shades. Comes in orange and yellow.

Price: $8.99 for 50 feet of 5/32 line, and $14.99 for 50 feet of 1/4 inch line. Buy at: securelineproducts.com/reflective.

DURAFLAME LOGS

What do you get when you cross charcoal briquets with firewood? Nope, it's not a joke. You get the new Duraflame "Campfire Roasting Logs."

Each log is made with recycled sawdust, renewable bio-wax and wood charcoal. They're a reliable way to cook s'mores, hotdogs, or anything else over a fire.

Building a fire is as easy as stacking two or three logs and lighting the wrappers. The ideal time for roasting is after about 45 minutes when the fire has turned into glowing coals.

The burn time can be extended by adding more logs. A 5-pound bundle of four logs is good for one campfire, or a case of six bundles is enough for four to six campfires. The one-campfire bundle is equivalent to burning 24 pounds of firewood, according to Duraflame.

Price: Four-log bundle is $5.99 or a six-bundle case is $29.99. Buy at: Walmart and Kmart.

DYNAMO FLASHLIGHT

Spoiler alert! For $6 (that's the spoiler) it's almost silly to not have one of these flashlights in your camp kit, RV, car, emergency kit or wherever. It contains two LED bulbs and needs no batteries. You crank it for one minute and get up to 30 minutes of light.

Price: $6. Buy at: Any sporting goods stores where Coghlan's products are sold, or go to coghlans.com.

ETON RAPTOR

This may be the mother of all camp gadgets, as well as a mothership for other electronic gadgets.

It's like the Swiss Army Knife of electronics. Check out all these features: a solar-charging device with the ABCs of the outdoors - altimeter, barometer and compass. The rechargeable lithium ion battery powers all functions, including the AM/FM/WB digital radio tuner, clock and alarm. You can also charge a cellphone via a USB cable. If that isn't enough for you, the Raptor has an LED flashlight and even a bottle opener. It's all housed in a splash-proof exterior to prevent damage from water and dust.

Price: $100. Buy at: Cabela's or shopetoncorp.com.

Because there's always room for something else in your camp kit.


Posted on Wed, May. 23, 2012 05:11 AM
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